Archaeology term papers Disclaimer: Free essays on Archaeology posted on this site were donated by anonymous users and are provided for informational use only. The free Archaeology research paper Human Evolution And The Fossil Record essay presented on this page should not be viewed as a sample of our on-line writing service. It is generally agreed upon by the scientific community, however, that humans evolved from lesser beings, and this essay will function to provide evidence to support this claim. Several points will be outlined, including the general physical changes that occurred between several key species on the phylogeny of man, and a discussion of dating methods used to pinpoint the age of the fossils. This essay will begin with a brief discussion of dating techniques. In the study of hominid evolution, two main methods of dating are used:
(K/Ar) Potassium Argon Dating Techniques I
As a first approximation one can assume this, but more accurate results must take into account fluctuations in the intensity of the cosmic rays entering the Earth’s atmosphere. These deviations were determined from the comparative dating of ancient tree rings a field called dendrochronology and the results were then compiled into a calibration curve. For items older than this, there isn’t enough undecayed 14C left to measure the ratio reliably. Radiocarbon dating in the future will have to include adjustments for human activities.
This technique is central to palaeoanthropology and the development of voles was crucial to the dating of the English Lower Paleolithic site of Boxgrove.
See this page in: Hungarian , Russian , Spanish People who ask about carbon 14C dating usually want to know about the radiometric  dating methods that are claimed to give millions and billions of years—carbon dating can only give thousands of years. People wonder how millions of years could be squeezed into the biblical account of history. Clearly, such huge time periods cannot be fitted into the Bible without compromising what the Bible says about the goodness of God and the origin of sin, death and suffering —the reason Jesus came into the world See Six Days?
Christians , by definition, take the statements of Jesus Christ seriously. This only makes sense with a time-line beginning with the creation week thousands of years ago. It makes no sense at all if man appeared at the end of billions of years. We will deal with carbon dating first and then with the other dating methods. How the carbon clock works Carbon has unique properties that are essential for life on Earth. One rare form has atoms that are 14 times as heavy as hydrogen atoms: Carbon is made when cosmic rays knock neutrons out of atomic nuclei in the upper atmosphere.
These displaced neutrons, now moving fast, hit ordinary nitrogen 14N at lower altitudes, converting it into 14C. Unlike common carbon 12C , 14C is unstable and slowly decays, changing it back to nitrogen and releasing energy.
Human Evolution: Summary, sources & Dating Tools, by L. Evans
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Oxford Monographs on Geology and Geophysics no.
The Potassium Argon Reaction Ar 40 is used for several reasons. First of all, Argon is inert. It does not chemically react with other elements at all. So Argon does not attach itself to the rock or any minerals in the rock. Secondly, Argon is usually a gas. These features are thought to allow any naturally occurring Argon from contaminating our measurements of the Argon 40 that is being produced from the radioactive decay of K When volcanic material flows over the land, the naturally occurring Argon gas is driven off by the excess heat.
When the rock is molten hot, it is more liquid in texture, allowing the Argon gas to escape. If all the gas is driven off, then there should be no Argon left in the rock. Once the rock cools and hardens, it is considered to be a closed system, because any new Ar 40 that is produced by the breakdown of K40 is trapped inside the rock crystal and cannot get out. So the scientist assumes that he or she is able to measure only that Ar 40 which is produced from K 40 since the rock has cooled.
All the other Ar 40 was forced out of the rock by the heat. By forcing out the naturally occurring Ar 40, the clock of the dating mechanism is reset or set to zero.
The various dating techniques available to archaeologists by Michael G. Furthermore, when you consider that many archaeological sites will contain numerous types of artifacts that permit the use of multiple dating methodologies, a modern archaeologist can often employ cross-dating methodologies which can allow for extremely accurate dating as far back as 10, years in some regions. Natural Dating Techniques A modern archaeologist has almost half a dozen natural dating techniques that she can apply in the field that she can use to quickly determine an approximate date range, which, in the cases of varve analysis and dendrochronology, can often be used to decrease the date range estimate to a matter of just a few years.
Fossil evidence shows a trend for their posterior teeth to have reduced in size, and the anterior teeth to have increased in size, from previous Homo species, while late archaic Homo sapiens finds show a general reduction in the size of both areas.
Venus figurines[ change change source ] The Venus of Willendorf is a well-known figurine. It was made about These are figurines very small statues of women, mostly pregnant with visible breasts. The figurines were found in areas of Western Europe to Siberia. Most are between 20, and 30, years old. Two figurines have been found that are much older: It has been dated to , to , years ago. It may be the one of the earliest things that show the human form. Different kinds of stone, bones and ivory were used to make the figurines.
Some are also made of clay which was then burned in a fire. This is one of the earliest known traces of the use of ceramics. Today it is not known what the figurines meant to the people who made them. There are two basic theories:
Dating dinosaurs and other fossils
Archaeology wordsmith During the summer, melting accelerates, melt-water streams flow faster and carry more material. Any text you add should be original, not copied from other sources. Definitions of potassium-argon dating words That taipei online dating be used fruitfully for the tools from stratified deposits. Potassium, which is present in most rocks and minerals, has a single radioactive isotopeK Radiopotassium dating definition Dating information definition Dating sites.
Smaller species of animals like rodents, birds, some molluscs and snails are found very sensitive to changes in climate than the larger mammals. Fission track dating is based upon the fact that over geological time spontaneous fission of uranium impurities produces minute sub- microscopic damage trails in the most insulating solids, both long period of time.
They conclude that humanity was created only a few thousand years ago.
Departures from this assumption are quite common, particularly in areas of complex geological history, but such departures can provide useful information that is of value in elucidating thermal histories. A deficiency of 40 Ar in a sample of a known age can indicate a full or partial melt in the thermal history of the area. Reliability in the dating of a geological feature is increased by sampling disparate areas which have been subjected to slightly different thermal histories.
Ar—Ar dating is a similar technique which compares isotopic ratios from the same portion of the sample to avoid this problem. Applications[ edit ] Due to the long half-life , the technique is most applicable for dating minerals and rocks more than , years old. For shorter timescales, it is unlikely that enough 40 Ar will have had time to accumulate in order to be accurately measurable.
K—Ar dating was instrumental in the development of the geomagnetic polarity time scale. One archeological application has been in bracketing the age of archeological deposits at Olduvai Gorge by dating lava flows above and below the deposits. In the K—Ar method was used by the Mars Curiosity rover to date a rock on the Martian surface, the first time a rock has been dated from its mineral ingredients while situated on another planet.
Essay on Science Reports. Research Paper on Human Evolution and the Fossil Record
It is generally agreed upon by the scientific community, however, that humans evolved from lesser beings, and this essay will function to provide evidence to support this claim. Several points will be outlined, including the general physical changes that occurred between several key species on the phylogeny of man, and a discussion of dating methods used to pinpoint the age of the fossils. This essay will begin with a brief discussion of dating techniques.
In the study of hominid evolution, two main methods of dating are used: Carbon dating involves the decay of radioactive C , which has a half life of years. This makes this method useful for dating of recent fossils, with good accuracy, up to 50, years back.
Many 19th-century archaeological excavations proceeded unscientifically.
Stansfield Macmillan, , pp. All quotations are consecutive, except where noted. The quotations are presented here in the order in which they appear in the book; since Patton quotes them out of order, I have inserted notes to help keep track of them. Geologists now assume that most of the water in the oceans was produced by volcanic outgassings. There are now approximately active volcanoes and about 10, dormant ones.
Six hundred volcanoes comparable to Paricutin could account for the present oceans in approximately 0. Since volcanic activity presumably was much greater during early earth history than at present, creationists argue that the age of the oceans would appear to be considerably less than 0. How much water vapor was lost to space during the early warmer stages of geological history is also a big unknown.
Of course, half a billion years is still too long to help young-earth creationists. In this next quotation, Patton ignores inconvenient weaknesses: Under uniformitarian rules, the total concentration of uranium salts of the oceans estimated at less than grams could be accumulated in less than one million years.
High School Earth Science/Absolute Ages of Rocks
Potential advertisers are cordially invited to choose from several thousand Web sites available for placement of your important advertisements. For further information, please contact me at: Gender can usually be determined from differences in the pelvic bones, the femur, or thigh bone, and from the greater size, ruggedness and muscle marking of the male skull. However, sexing of the Willandra collection was very difficult, because of its generally poor and fragmentary condition.
Moreover, sexing criteria developed on Holocene skeletal collections may not be completely applicable to very different Pleistocene populations. For example, on the standard Larnach and Freedman suite of cranial features used by Webb and others to sex skulls, the gracile male WLH 3 would, in the absence of a pelvis, have been pronounced female.
If an experiment is conducted and the information needed to answer the problem is not forthcoming, then another experiment can be designed to answer the problem.
I have learned to patiently keep on explaining that neither Darwin nor any other scientist studying human evolution has ever asserted that humans are descended from apes. Nevertheless, these distinctions do little to allay the visceral feelings evoked by the thought of human descent from primates. Many Christians reject the notion of human evolution on purely biblical and theological grounds. The Primates From both an evolutionary and a taxonomic point of view, human beings belong to the order of Primates.
In the late 20th century, advances in genetic research have provided direct evidence for genealogical relationships and have bolstered the evidence based on anatomical similarities. This hypothesis has been strengthened by comparative studies of such common proteins as the hemoglobins, cytochromes, and serum albumins Price